The Orlando Magic haven’t been a good team for a long time, and there is little reason to believe they will reach the NBA playoffs this season.
However, basketball fans shouldn’t ignore the Magic, as there are three young prospects who are giving people every reason to keep tabs on them all year long.
1. Paolo Banchero
The 6-foot-10 power forward is off to a good start, averaging 24.0 points, 7.6 rebounds, and 1.6 blocked shots per game, and in doing so, he has become only the third No. 1 pick ever to score at least 20 points in each of his first five games.
Paolo Banchero has scored 21 points against the Cavaliers, becoming the third No. 1 pick in NBA history to score 20-plus in his first five games.
The other two: Elvin Hayes (10 games in 1968-69) and Oscar Robertson (6 games in 1960-61).
— Khobi Price (@khobi_price) October 27, 2022
He had a strong outing on Wednesday versus the Cleveland Cavaliers with 29 points, eight rebounds, four assists, and two blocks.
Paolo Banchero's offensive game is already so advanced.
29 points and 9 boards for the Magic tonight. pic.twitter.com/MJzhLPVxOx
— B/R Hoops (@brhoops) October 27, 2022
Perhaps Banchero will become the franchise player Orlando hasn’t had since Dwight Howard left a decade ago.
2. Mo Bamba
Mo Bamba hasn’t played a lot so far this season, but he has been a rising young center for some time now, and he was recently rewarded with a new contract.
Last season, he averaged 10.6 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 1.7 blocks in 25.7 minutes per game while expanding his game by shooting 38.1 percent from 3-point range.
It will be interesting to see if he and Banchero can mesh well playing together on the floor at the same time.
3. The Victor Wembanyama Sweepstakes
The Magic could be one team vying for the top pick in next June’s NBA Draft, which would give them the opportunity to draft Wembanyama.
The French phenom has been called a “generational talent,” and if he really is all that, he and Banchero could give the Magic a frontcourt tandem to behold for years to come.